Captain Charles Sigsbee was ordered to sail into the port of Havana, Cuba in order to protect American citizens and property during a conflict between the Cubans and Spaniards.
Three weeks later, Captain Sigsbee hadn’t seen any Cuban rebels and claimed that the Spanish officers were treating them well.
As everyone slept on the boat. An explosion occurred on the Maine. Charles Sigsbee escaped his room only to find the front of the ship, where all the men were sleeping was already at the bottom. It killed 254 seamen and wounded 59 sailors.
William Randolph Hearst of New York’s Journal and Joseph Pulitzer of New York’s World said that the Spanish were the reason the Maine sunk. They had pictures to prove it and Americans believed it.
Stories about Spaniards keeping Cubans in “death camps” spread. Headlines such as “Spanish Cannibalism”, “Inhuman Torture”, and “Amazon Warriors Fight for Rebels” flooded the newsstands.
America then declares war. The U.S. however wasn't ready for battle so Commodore Dewey sails to Manila Bay to attack the Spaniards. They won the battle against Spain.
The U.S. demanded that the Spanish commander surrender. But instead, the general of Cuba ordered his fleet to attack the American ships. The Spaniards were outnumbered and they suffered a massive defeat.
Congress called for the annexation of all Spanish territories. Spain assumed they would annex Cuba but they insisted that they were fighting in support of Cuban independance